My Sons Heavy Drinking and Self Abusing his Health Worries Me

by Kathleen Wisbey
(Perth west australia)

I used to wonder if he had a problem with drink when he was younger being around 17-19 yrs of age as one of his friends alerted me to his habits, not in an unfriendly manner, but I remember the day and time when I was told – a mother never forgets such things

I remember one Saturday afternoon I went to the pub to get him out – he wasn’t my husband but my son – I always figured there were better things to do than be at a pub and waste your money there.

At that stage of his life I wasn’ t particularly worried just trying to instill some rules. He had friends and he went out, he had a job and drove a car. I figured one day he might get married and have kids. He moved out of our home like most teens but not until he was around nearly 20 yrs old with a couple of mates and his sister. We celebrsted his 21st as a family out and I never saw anything to cause me worry – he had his 18th birthday at home as well nothing really bad happened, and yes the kids were smoking pot – which i didn’ t approve of either – that was a big worry.

He moved in and out of places to live and shared with different people. He had a good job and in one of those jobs (after he finished his apprenticeship as a heavy duty mechanic) hurt his back – I guess at this stage he was living on his own. I noticed a few empty bottles around but his place seemed reasonably clean. But to me he wasn’t a drinker that would make you worry.

Over the years he helped both his sister and brother through their rough patches and growing-up periods – he was always there for them. On some ocassions I noticed he was more aggressive and rather controlling but I know in my heart he would pay for their bills if they asked and he dearly loved his brother and sister – he was and is a good brother in that way. He also joined the mining industry where the money he was getting paid was a lot more – this is where I believe the binge drinking and out of control drinking started and since then I notice he needs bottles of liquor before going to bed. Incidentally I tried to tell him that if he came back home to live he would have to leave the drink alone, but my voice and conditions went out the window – to me it shows no respect.

Over the years we have seen him go from a somewhat fit person to a larger in stature person in weight – we cook his meals and sometimes do his washing – it is at this stage of our lives as we are older now (my husband recently having a serious operation) would dearly love to see him move into his own place – he took over our home and shed and simply thinks its ok.

He is very generous but he wants to pick arguments when he gets drunk. I have gone to seek help but am not the drinker. I have put self-help leaflets on the fridge door and I have said over and over its your health.

I am worried about as we get older. I do not look forward to his mental and physical state as he tries to control me. I just want some peace in our lives. To this day I do not understand why he drinks.

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